Where once there were just a handful of EV charging stations in select areas, now just about every major American city has plenty of public and private charging points for electric cars. Unfortunately, all these charging stations make a tempting target for copper thieves.
Transport Evolved reports that the area around Vancouver, Canada has been experiencing a rash of EV charger vandalism and copper theft, buoyed by high prices for quality copper wiring. WIth many Level 2 charging stations loaded with copper wiring, some EV charging sites have been hit multiple times. The thieves often use shovels to dig up electrical lines, and bolt cutters to lop off five or six-foot sections of wiring at a time that can be sold for as much as $4 per pound. It won’t get you rich, but it will get you your next fix of your drug-of-choice.
Copper theft is hardly a new phenomenon, though thieves risk serious injury or death if they happen to snip a live wire. Their greed also means charging stations can be out of service for weeks, or even months as companies work to repair them. Meanwhile, innocent EV drivers are left without a place to plug in and quickly recharge.
Some solutions include warning signs and possibly even cameras mounted to charging stations, but this is not a cheap solution. A better method might be an anti-tampering alarm, like a car alarm, or even a silent alarm that warns the company or police that somebody might be messing with a charging station.
Any other suggestions for preventing EV station tampering?